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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Bill Gross' $100MM Habit

News summary by MFWire's editors

Bill Gross just put more money into both Pimco closed-end fund and his famous hobby, several months after leaving Pimco for Janus.

Joe Morris of Ignites reports that last week the bond king put $1.1 million more into the Pimco Corporate & Income Opportunity Fund . And on Sunday CBS Sunday Morning aired an interview in which Gross confirmed that over his lifetime he has spent more than $100 million on philately, stamp collecting.

The TV interview highlights a recent purchase with a backstory. In 1918 the U.S. Postal Service commemorated a World War I plane, the Jenny, with a series of stamps. A few were printed upside down, and they're nigh priceless. In 2013 USPS issued a commemorative Jenny stamp, 2.2 million sheets, all upside down in honor of the rare misprint from 95 years earlier. Yet they printed just 100 of the new sheets right side up. A philatelist who spent $41,000 on sheets got one of the 100, and sold it for $45,0000 to an anonymous buyer who turned out to be Gross himself.

If the $100-million-plus stamp investment isn't enough to impress you, here's another tidbit: Gross funded a gallery at the Smithsonian's National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. 

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

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